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Eriogonum crocatum

Family: Polygonaceae

Common names: SAFFRON BUCKWHEAT, SAINT CATHERINE'S LACE, UMBRELLA PLANT, WILD BUCKWHEAT

Native to: Coastal Southern California

Plant

Type: perennial

Forms: clumping, erect, rosette

Max height: 0.65 feet

Max width: 3.3 feet

Flower

yellow

Leaf

light

Horticulture

Attracts wildlife: adult butterfly, specific butterfly species

Exposure: sun

Landscape use: container

Propagates by: seed

flowers in spring

flowers in summer

Soil types: clay, wide range

USDA Zone: zone 9 to +20 f

Temp. range: +20 to +30 °F

Water: dry, moderate

  • Eriogonum crocatum

Eriogonum, WILD BUCKWHEAT, is a member of the Polygonaceae family with 362 species. Of these 4 are cultivated perennials: crocatum, grande, latifolium, nudum, umbellatum. They vary in height from under half a foot to over 7 feet tall and will grow in dry to moderate watering conditions.

Eriogonum crocatum, a native to coastal Southern California, is a perennial that grows to nearly 3/4 feet tall and spreads to about 3 1/2 feet wide. It produces simple yellow flowers in spring and summer and can be grown from seed in Zone 9. It prefers to be grown in sun. It is small enough to grow in a container.

Numerous butterflies feed on Eriogonum:
Apodemia mejicanus, Sonoran Metalmark
Apodemia mormo, Mormon Metalmark
Apodemia virgulti, Behr's Metalmark
Callophrys affinis, Western Green Hairstreak
Euphilotes enoptes, Pacific Dotted-Blue
Euphilotes pallescens, Pallid Dotted-Blue
Lycaena hermes, Hermes Copper
Lycaena heteronea, Blue Copper
Philotiella speciosa, Small Dotted-Blue
Plebejus acmon, Acmon Blue
Plebejus icarioides, Boisduval's Blue
Satyrium californica, California Hairstreak
Satyrium saepium, Hedgerow Hairstreak
Satyrium tetra, Mountain Mahogany Hairstreak
Euphilotes rita, Rita Dotted-Blue

Euphilotes enoptes
Container plants that attract adult butterflies - perennial

This plant is one of 186 perennials suitable to grow in a container that will attract adult butterflies. 38 of these plants attract birds and 67 attract specific butterfly species. They can be found in every height range – from tiny to large – from less than a foot high to over 10 feet tall. 19 of these plants are drought tolerant, more than 80 are available for dry or moderate watering conditions. 29 are deciduous, while 71 are evergreen. Some can grow in Zone 2, while the others grow in Zones 3-11. 178 perennial plants that attract butterflies and can be grown in containers in Zone 9. 77 can be used as cut flowers. They come in any one of the available flower colors.

We have found that, when given a choice, butterflies and bees frequent named species more often than cultivars. You may want to keep this in mind when you select plants for your garden if your goal is to attract and support these insects.

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